Gov needs to invest more in new homes to rent

A recent survey from CIH revealed that, with home ownership increasingly out of reach, more investment should be put into new homes for rent. June 29, 2016 / Isla MacFarlane
Gov needs to invest more in new homes to rent

The goal of suitable housing is seen as out of reach for ambitious young people, according to a report commissioned by the Chartered Institute of Housing (CIH).

In light of the survey, which revealed that 79 per cent of respondents believe today’s young people will have a hard time buying a home and 80 per cent said renting is an important part of the UK’s housing mix, the CIH is called for more investment to be put into new homes to rent.

In her keynote speech at the CIH’s annual conference in Manchester this week (June 28-30), CIH chief executive Terrie Alafat will tell the conference that while more government investment in housing has been committed, it will not solve the housing crisis.

“Supporting households to achieve home ownership is a legitimate ambition for government policy,” she will tell delegates. “But we do need a better answer for the third of households who are not homeowners and for lower income households more generally.

“We think this means paying more attention to policy for, and investment in, rented housing, including providing new homes at sub market rents. That includes new homes for social rent. Last summer’s Budget and the Autumn Statement actually increased the resources allocated to housing investment, so a lack of money is no longer necessarily the prime issue.

“We have assessed the amount the government plans to spend over the next five years, and in grants, loans and guarantees allocated to housing this totals just under £45 billion. And we know that government has an ambition to build one million new homes by 2020. A scale of ambition which we support – failure to build sufficient numbers of new homes is at the heart of our housing crisis.

“Yet despite this welcome commitment some important questions remain. Perhaps most important is to ask whether the government’s investment plans will indeed help create a housing system that works for everyone. And our conclusion is that it may not. The new investment plans will help hundreds of thousands of people. But many of those will be people who are already in a better position in the housing market.”

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